tv Anderson Cooper 360 CNN July 26, 2012 10:00pm-11:00pm EDT
according to the tax returns, the disabled veterans nation foundation, the dvnf has taken in, get this, $85 million in donations over the last four years. $85 million. and while we can't find much of any of that money being given directly to disabled veterans, the dvnf says they do give away what the group claims are millions of dollars in useful stuff to small veterans charities around the country. drew griffin has been following the money right from the start and he's been getting a lot of doors slammed in his face. >> hi, how are you? >> we're not going to be doing any on camera. so the bottom line is you're not going to give me an interview. >> where is the money going? i'm trying to reach mr. shoeoff. oh, he's not in? so here is the question, raised over three years, and none of the money has gone to any veterans. ma'am? >> as you can see, it hasn't been easy. you would think any charity who would want to be transparent would answer questions.
if they weren't doing anything wrong. not this one. he did manage to visit one of those small charities where he found some items that could help vets. he also found a lot useless so-called gifts in kind, including those coconut candy m&ms that apparently don't melt in your hand but sure leaves a bitter taste in your mouth. >> candy's one of the most requested -- >> reporter: roy runs charity services international. a for-profit warehouse and distribution center in fort mill, south carolina. >> we send out to hundreds of organizations. we send on behalf of our charities out to these organizations. we just handle the shipping. >> among his 50 clients are the spca international and the disabled veterans national foundation. one supposedly helping pets. the other vets. and both as we previously reported taking in millions in donations. while giving out almost nothing in cash. what they do give away is stuff.
like this stuff j.d. simpson showed us. the disabled veterans national foundation sent his homeless veterans shelter in alabama. he got hundreds of pairs of shiny navy dress shoes. some emergency blankets. some broken furniture. and lots and lots of coconut m&ms. >> didn't have a lot of use for 11,000 bags. >> reporter: u.s. vets, a charity in prescott, arizona got an even stranger shipment. chefs coats. and football pants. >> makes a real -- >> reporter: roy tidwell says he arranged the shipments and insists both of these charities knew what he was sending and they wanted it. the group that got the chefs coat has no idea why they got chefs coat. zero idea. and football pants? you think there's a homeless veterans football team out there? >> absolutely. >> reporter: you do? >> absolutely. there's 300-bed -- >> reporter: in prescott, arizona, minor league of homeless veterans playing football?
>> i don't doubt that homeless vets play football, basketball >> reporter: i'm sure you don't doubt it. i've talked to those people. they said they didn't need this stuff. >> they didn't need it. they shouldn't have approved the inventory when they got it. it doesn't just show up. >> reporter: actually, according to u.s. vets, the vets group out in arizona, those football pants and everything else did just show up. we did not request chefs coats, hats, football pants or anything from charity services international. the group tells cnn. and u.s. vets says, officially requested dvnf and charity services international not to ship us any more gifts in kind. as for the coconut m&ms, j.d. simpson says he did get an e-mail that candy was on the way. he didn't think much of it. till 11,000 bags. one-half ton of coconut m&ms, arrived. chef coats and football pants and coconut m&ms may be just about worthless to a bunch of
homeless vets. but to the charities that sent them, they have real value. a value that seems incredibly inflated when they are written down on charity tax returns. take the spca international. a group that's raised $27 million to supposedly help soldiers and their pets. group's manager wouldn't tell us anything about the money. >> no, i'm not going to reveal that, none of it, i can't answer any of your questions right now. believe me, i would love to. >> reporter: but on its tax returns, we did learn about a certain shipment of animal medicines the spca international donated to an animal welfare group in nepal. cnn was provided with the invoice. it shows an itemized list of drugs that the charity values at $816,000. a huge gift in kind. but when the gift arrived in nepal, the charity receiving the drugs valued them for customs purposes at a mere $2,500.
tidwell arranged the shipment. how can it be $816,000 here and $2,500 there? >> the value that's placed on something according to law is placed accord to the exit market. it would be what you would have to pay for it in the place that it's exiting. the fact they might be able to purchase similar medicines made in a back room in nepal for a far lower price doesn't change the value of the medicines that are u.s. produced. >> reporter: but $816,000 versus $2,500? that seems -- >> yeah, that's outrageous. >> reporter: that didn't sound right. so we cross-checked the bill of lading against the international drug pricing guide. which values drugs for nonprofit donation.
according to our calculation, the charity in nepal had it just about right. $2,600. each pill worth less than 2 cents. >> how can i explain that? i can't. but i could dig into it and try to explain it. >> reporter: he never got back to us. but in an e-mail spca international told us it follows industry standards in accounting regulations. in placing values on donated goods. lou kingston, who runs a charity based in pittsburgh called brother's brother says he's seen many charities inflate values of gifts in kind. why? to trick donors. >> that means they can declare a lower overhead cost. they can claim that they're more effective to the public than the real dollars might indicate. >> reporter: and here are the numbers. in its 2011 tax return, dvnf reported $29 million in cash donations, but also said it
received, and then donated, nearly $9 million of gifts in kind. spca international received $14 million in cash donations. and received and then shipped $5 million of gifts in kind. the only actual cash money involved in the gifts was the half million dollars roy tidwell was paid to arrange the shipment. >> it's a very simplistic answer to say, why don't they give away money? >> reporter: when they're collecting tens of millions of dollars of it. >> my portion of it is getting goods to help people who are suffering. goods that i can deliver for pennies on the dollar. and most places that get them are very appreciative. >> reporter: even if it is 11,000 bags of coconut m&ms. >> drew, with each report you do on this, i just find it more and more stunning. i find it amazing that he can go on the air and say he's providing a valuable service. when we've shown they're
shipping stuff like m&ms. even the medicines have a value on paper that doesn't make any sense. >> it doesn't make any sense to the state of south carolina either. that's where tidwell's based. the secretary of state's office is now investigating the business specifically asking him to provide the contracts that he has with these charities. >> what about the charities themselves? >> there's been a potentially huge development there. it's focusing on the for-profit fund-raising connected with so many of these charities. quadriga art. we've told you about them before. the company that actually is making tens of millions of dollars in this charity business. the senate finance committee, which began looking into these charities after our reporting, is expanding that investigation. it is going to begin looking at quadriga art. that company's refused to talk to us. we've learned they will be called on to answer questions from senate investigators who want to know what we want to know.
how can so much money be donated and hardly any of it go to the veterans or the animals or the people that it was intended for? >> it's just stunning. drew, appreciate the reporting as always. i do find it stunning an organization can raise tens of millions of dollars for disabled veterans allegedly and the money isn't going to disabled veterans. going to some fund raising organization. and again, i come back to, if they had nothing to hide, why won't they answer our questions? i mean, people donating $58 million to them, you think they'd want to open up their books. you'd think they want to show exactly where that money has gone. let us know what you think. we're on facebook. twitter, @andersoncooper. i'll be tweeting about this tonight. this man, shot three times in theater number nine. he thought his life was over. instead, thankfully, it's just beginning again. also, a father's last message to his children and their enduring message to him. you'll hear from his kids. [ male announcer ] this is anna, her long day teaching the perfect swing
or take aleve, which can relieve pain all day with just two pills. good eye. we continue to remember the victims and survivors of the aurora shooting. friends and family remembered micayla medek today. the funeral the second of the 12. she was the youngest of three children. working her way through college at a local subway. saving money to travel india where some of her co-workers were from. she was just 23 years old. he is 28 but could have just as easily died along with micayla.
peers did -- telling his story tonight to randi kaye. >> reporter: for the first time since the shooting, piers owe ferrell didn't wake up this morning in a hospital bed. pierce never thought he would live to tell his story about what happened inside theater nine. he was sitting in the third row, just one seat from the aisle, right near the exit door where the shooter entered. >> when i saw him literally almost stopped. everything was in slow motion. i couldn't even hear the movie anymore. i couldn't hear anything. like, literally, i could feel like i could hear his foot steps walking into the theater. i mean, it was just -- i was just locked in on him. >> reporter: pierce immediately noticed the suspect's shooter's body armor and gas mask. >> it was just a presence, you know, literally i could feel like just a cloud of evil just walking into the theater.
>> reporter: he was so close pierce saw the gunman throw the tear gas, then open fire. pierce was hit three times. twice in his left foot by both the shotgun and assault rifle. and then again with the glock pistol in his upper arm. the bullet shattered his bone. >> my whole left side of my body was just radiating pain. so i didn't know if it was in the arm. i didn't know if it was in the back. but, really, i mean that bullet just hit me and -- i mean, it >> reporter: pierce dove to the ground and covered his head. he could taste blood in his mouth and noticed it started to pool around his head on the floor. when the shooting stopped for a moment, he tried to make it to the exit with his friend who had been shot in the leg. pierce collapsed. his friend, thinking he was dead, escaped. pierce's head was just inches from the gunman's boot. >> and i could just feel his presence in the theater. i mean, i could feel him walking around me. i'm fairly -- >> reporter: like a shadow? >> yeah, a shadow. i could just feel it over me. >> reporter: pierce, who is deeply spiritual, thought the
gunman was going to kill him, so he started praying and made peace with dying. then he started thinking about his brother and father and realized he didn't want them to blame god for his death. at that very moment he says the gunman simply walked away. >> i could feel the evil just running out of that theater. and then all of a sudden, he just calmly walked to his car. >> reporter: you think god was in the theater that night? >> absolutely. >> reporter: you think he saved you? >> yes. there's no doubt in my mind that god saved me. >> reporter: why, why you? >> i've prayed so hard for the last year for the lord to just give me a chance to show the world who he is, to show the world. >> reporter: and you think this was his way? >> -- how wonderful he is. i do, i believe that he saved me out of that theater so i can just show the world that there is light. >> reporter: to those who say this wouldn't have happened if god was in the theater, pierce says he believes god's hand created two miracles. the shooter's rifle jammed. and the bombs at his apartment never went off.
preventing the loss of even more people. pierce has already found it in his heart to forgive the man who nearly killed him. and hopes one day to meet him and pray with him. what would you say to him? >> i would say "i forgive you." and i would ask him if i could pray for him. and because the truth is every person in this world deserves forgiveness and every one of us we've committed. but i pray he gets life in prison. and i pray in those 40, 50 years that somehow, some way, god can find his way into his heart and forgive. >> did pierce say anything about how he got out of the theater, who saved him? >> he actually remembers laying on the floor of the movie theater. he said two police officers tried to carry him out but his arm was hurting him so much they ended up walking him out.
when he got outside, he laid down on the concrete just outside the back door of theater nine and he remembers, anderson, seeing the shooter's guns laying on the concrete next to him. he also remembers them working on the little girl, veronica, the 6-year-old girl who died. but it was in the end police officers who actually brought him to the hospital. when he got out last night, the first thing he did was visit his friend who was at another hospital, and he's recovering as well. >> good to hear that, randi, thanks. not far from the theater, there's a makeshift memorial site bearing 12 white crosses. this is brook and weston cowden, along with other family members, at the cross for their father, gordon. brook and her sister sierra were with him in the theater. on the cross it says, i love you both. underneath, their father's name. a second inscription, i love you, dad, and forever will. brook and weston cowden join us now.
i'm so sorry for your loss. i can't imagine what this has been like for you. brook, how are you holding up? >> it's a lot of off and on. i think our dad raised us and continues with the strength of us that we have strength but at moments you'll just break down and lose it. >> weston, i read your dad described in a lot of great ways. somebody described him as a true texas gentleman. what do you want people to know about him? what was he like? >> my dad taught me what it meant to be a man. he was -- he was a father first and last. and always. that was -- that was just what he was all about. we were trying to go through and figure out for the sake of the eulogy and such what he was and what he was into. but, really, it was just, well, he had -- he had us four kids. and that was just the life that
he lived. and what he was all about. >> you guys were the focus of his life. >> yes. that was just -- he was a dad. >> brook, your last days with your dad included some really special memories i understand. >> yes, sir. actually, hours before we went to the premiere, he and i had recently declared ourselves running buddies. we went to a local park where there was a concert going on and we actually danced at that concert and, i mean, i'll remember that dance for a very long time so -- >> you know, weston, we've been trying to just give family members the opportunity just to talk about who they lost and what those people mean to them. is there anything else you want people to know about your dad, about the life he lived? >> just -- he was -- the world's a worse place without him.
that's -- not to sound as grim as it came out. but he was -- he just brought so much life. he lived so passionately. lived life like it was supposed to be lived i guess would be the biggest thing. he was a father. just -- that's honestly the biggest thing about him, was he was living for the four of us. he was passionate in his faith. like you had mentioned, a southern gentleman. he was living his life for all the right reasons. >> i understand your family set up a special fund in your dad's memory. >> yes. he did. it's under our name. >> it's -- i guess the -- you would go to chase bank and it's the gordon cowden memorial fund. >> we'll put that on our website. they can go to basically any chase bank to make that donation.
brook and weston, again, my heart goes out to you, and i wish you peace and strength to you and your family in the days ahead. >> thank you. >> thanks. >> there's other news to report on tonight. we want to take you inside syria. several thousand residents of this bombed out city are try to survive. living in cellars or wherever they can to find shelter from the missiles and mortars. a documentary filmmaker has just returned from a city called reston and the images we are going to show you are just stunning, heartbreaking. i think it's important you see what some people are having to live through right now in syria. [ annie ] this is the story of a girl named annie
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syria may be on the cusp of catastrophe. the u.s. state department says the assad regime appears to be, quote, lining up for a massacre. intense fighting has raged for a week. these videos were purportedly shot over the last several days. cnn can't verify the authenticity of them of course. today there were reports of helicopter gunships flying over allepo. assad's forces moving through the city. a headline on syria's pro-regime newspaper reads, allepo, the mother of all battles. a documentary filmmaker named marcell mettlesifen has risked his own safety to cover the uprising. he recently returned from a city that sits between damascus and
alleppo. he talked with diana magnat talked with him about what he found there. >> reporter: it was once a town of 55,000. now just a few thousand are left. cooped up in cellars or wherever they can find shelter from the mortars and the helicopter gun ships and deadly missiles. >> we asked people why they not at least moved into another area. because their part of town was hit more frequently than others. they insisted on the safety of their houses. there was no logic in this answer but a lot of people were so much eaten up by fear that no purely rationale decision seems to be possible anymore. >> reporter: supplies are scarce. this food must feed two families. almost impossible to get hold of. >> translator: my son is sick but all i can do is use a wet towel to lower his fever. >> reporter: and each day, the bombs claim more lives. there is only one small makeshift hospital here.
deep in a basement. moments after the shelling, its corridors fill with screams. an endless nightmare for the doctors on shift. >> they were chain smoking, nearly all of them, sometimes in tears. just busy working, working, working. three doctors for a city under siege and constant shelling. >> reporter: somehow it is always the children who are hit. they cannot run fast enough. doctors fight for an hour to save this 4-year-old boy. he has a piece of shrapnel in his back. but it has pierced his heart. they cannot save him. his uncle comes to say good-bye. there are no words for this pain.
>> i don't like to film here with the blood. believe me, i don't like it. easier to me to film the bomb. than i see the blood. did you see that, the child? did you see? >> reporter: and yet there is a resilience here. children play at being fighters for the free syria army. >> they haven't been afraid? >> reporter: no, they say, not of the shelling, only of god. the children divide themselves into teams. half regime forces. half rebel fighters. even as they play civil war on the streets of rastan, there is talk of an end game in syria. hope perhaps that when these hands are old enough to hold
real guns, they will not have to choose who they fight for. >> life in the city of rastan in syria. mitt romney getting a cool reception in parts of london. prime minister david cameron taking umbrage after mr. romney told nbc's brian williams that britain's preparations for the olympic games were, quote, disconcerting. mr. cameron saying of course it's easier if you hold an olympic games in the middle of nowhere. apparently referring to salt lake city winter olympics that romney ran. the london mayor even mocked romney at a pre-olympic rally in front of thousands of people. romney's name getting boos from the crowd. mr. romney is pointing to his own olympic record as a model for america. >> the country is in need of a turnaround. the olympics was a turnaround. there were businesses i've been associated with that needed a turnaround. that kind of experience, of focusing on the most critical issue, building the most
effective team possible, creating a common vision, unifying around that vision and then delivering results, is something i think the american people would like to see in our economy right now. "360" follow-up tonight. the little girl taken from the only parent she's ever known and put into the arms of a stranger who is her biological father. we'll have the court's decision. what happened to her just ahead. [ male announcer ] count the number of buttons in your car. now count the number of buttons on your tablet. isn't it time the automobile advanced? introducing cue in the all-new cadillac xts. the simplicity of a tablet has come to your car. ♪
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seemed destined to end with broken hearts one way or another. it was just a question of whose hearts. at the center of the story is this little girl. her name is veronica. she's too young to understand the legal battle that's been raging for the past three years. a battle over who will raise her. today, the south carolina supreme court ruled on the case. we'll tell you what happened in a moment. first, want to give you some background. the heart wrenching case hinges on the fact that veronica is part native american. as randi kaye explained in this report from earlier this year. >> reporter: her first name is veronica. her last name is -- well, complicated. at just 2 years old, this little girl from charleston, south carolina, is caught up in one of the strangest adoption cases we've ever heard. her story begins in 2009. when veronica's biological parents who weren't married put her up for adoption. >> you want to be an engineer when you grow up? >> yes. >> reporter: that's when matt and melanie entered the picture. they tried to have their own
children but invito fertilization failed them. an adoption attorney connected them with veronica's biological mom who told them the father, dustin brown, a u.s. soldier from oklahoma, wanted to waive his parental rights. veronica was born in september in oklahoma. and from that moment, they were a part of veronica's life. >> we were at the birth and the delivery room. matt cut her umbilical cord. she's never not been with us. >> you want mommy to hold you? >> reporter: they were thrilled to have their new baby girl. they took her straight from the hospital to their house in charleston. and were in the process of finalizing the adoption. four months after they brought veronica home, dustin brown signed a waiver saying he would not contest the adoption. but two weeks later, brown decided he wanted his daughter back. and filed for paternity and custody. jessica monday is a friend. >> it wasn't till this child was
4 months old that he decides he wants to be a part of her life. with no regard to the birth mother, her decision, the pregnancy, the family that's taken care of his child, and to just come and say, i've changed my mind, that just doesn't work, it shouldn't work that way. >> reporter: south carolina law says a father is stripped of his paternity rights if he hasn't provided prebirth support or taken steps to be a father shortly after birth. but in this case, state law was trumped by a little known federal law from 1978. called the indian child welfare act. you see, brown is a member of the cherokee nation. which means veronica is part cherokee too. so before they could finalize the adoption, a family court judge ruled in favor of veronica's biological father,
ordering them to hand her over. the law's designed to protect the interest of indian children and to keep indian children with indian family members. congress took action after 1976 study showed about 30% of indian children were being removed from their homes. and of those, about 90% of them non-indian families. the attorney general for the cherokee nation told us the law is working. >> one of the original authors of the indian child welfare act said his intent with this law is not to take adoptive children away from loving homes. how would you like to respond to that? >> it's not anyone's ever intent to rip a child away from a loving home. but we want to make sure those loving homes have the opportunity to be indian homes first. and you look at the welfare of the child and if, you know, at all possible we want that child to be raised in a traditional indian family.
>> reporter: that logic is lost on veronica's adoptive parents. >> this law's been used unjustly. detriment -- >> indian child welfare act is just destroying families like ours. >> reporter: this past new year's eve after two years with the little girl they hoped to call their own, matt and melanie handed veronica over to her biological father. >> do you think this is in her best interest? >> i think so. >> reporter: that night was the first time veronica had met her biological father. friends of the couple had hoped that veronica's dad would stay in south carolina a few days and get to know his little girl. but instead that night he drove her here to his house in bartelsville, oklahoma. about 1,200 miles away from the only home she'd ever known. >> i mean, she's a 2-year-old girl that got shoved in a truck and driven to oklahoma with strangers. >> reporter: we tried to ask dustin brown why he wanted his
daughter back but he didn't answer the door. one family in pieces. another trying to make itself whole. randi kaye, cnn, bartonsville, oklahoma. >> today, the supreme court upheld veronica's return to her biological father. it was a split decision 3-2. in a statement, veronica's adoptive parents said there really are no words to describe the incredible heartbreak disappointment and pain. this is a complete failure. within our justice system. we want to dig deeper into this with disability rights attorney and children's advocate raven martin. also senior legal analyst jeffrey toobin. is this just a case where federal law trumps state law? >> that's how the south carolina supreme court saw it. they said that under this unusual statute from 1978 -- a statute that really had a good purpose. you know, there was a time when 30% of indian children were being taken from their biological parents and the congress said, look, that is --
that's a terrible injustice. so they -- this law went into effect. it clearly does not seem to -- they didn't intend it for this situation. >> right. >> but it was a reasonable decision. although, you know, one that could have gone either way. 3-2 decision. and that's -- that's how they decided. >> the father did waive his rights apparently early on and two weeks later changed his mind. >> he did. he said the reason he waived his rights initially is he thought that meant the child was going to the mother, not up for adoption. whether that's true or not is something that's in dispute in the case. that did not end his rights under the indian child welfare act. >> are you surprised by that? >> i'm not surprised. once that lower court gave the child to the biological father, i had a suspicion the supreme court was going to affirm that decision. when you read the decision, it's almost as if the courts were
looking at two different cases. you have the majority painting the picture of this dad that signed away his rights, but then stepped up to the plate to assume his parental responsibilities. but yet the dissent talks about a dad that abandoned his child. that didn't provide any financial support for the mom while she was pregnant. that didn't seek custody or visitation till the child was 16 months old. didn't pay child support. so you're almost, you know, asking yourself did these courts, did the majority and the dissent look at two different sets of facts in making this decision? when i read it, because the indian child welfare act is interpreted entirely differently by the majority and the dissent. >> we've got a digital dashboard question. from charlotte. she asked, how can that decision have been in the best interest of the child? the judges in the dissenting opinion actually says the majority made their decision without regard to the best interest of the child, didn't they?
>> absolutely, anderson. when you look at that majority opinion, it talks about that this decision is not only in the best interest of the child but it's in the best interest of the tribal nation. and it says the indian child welfare act goes further than just looking at the best interest of the child but looks at the entire interest of the tribe. and so it says through an analysis this dad has a clean home. he was in the military that he did step up at some point and ask to be involved in child's life. the judge concludes or the court concludes by those facts that this is -- this decision is in the best interest of the child. but seemingly totally ignoring the two years the child spent with the adoptive parents. you know, incredible amount of love and support that the adoptive parents gave to the mom while she was pregnant. so it's a little hard to believe based on the facts that we know that this really was in the best interest of baby veronica. >> there is a point in the opinion where they say just that.
it's not just about the best interest of the trield. it's about the interest of the tribe. the united states supreme court has ultimate jurisdiction over this federal law. i would not be surprised if they took this case. >> really? >> the united states supreme court doesn't take many cases. they get 7,000 cases a year. they take 80 cases a year. this case might go to the united states -- >> because of that? >> because it's an interpretation of a federal statute regarding native americans. the supreme court always takes a certain number of native american cases every year. i would not be surprised if they took it, if they want to keep fighting it. they may, for their own reasons of sanity, want to get, you know, want to give up at this point. >> yeah. >> i agree with you, jeffrey. given that there's only -- we only have one 1988 case where the supreme court has even looked at this indian child welfare law. i agree, this would be a perfect case for the supreme court to revisit, you know, what is the true purpose and intent of this law? is it for cases like this? or is it really meant to prevent those huge number of indian kids from being displaced from their tribes?
>> i tweeted the opinion, so if people want to read it themselves, they can just get it off ac360 and jeffreytoobin, twitter. >> your tweet is what? >>@jeffreytoobin. >> one of jerry sandusky's victims releases voice mails the convicted child molester left on his phone just days before his arrest. mid grade dark roast forest fresh full tank brain freeze cake donettes rolling hot dogs g of ice anti-freeze wash and dry diesel self-serve fix a flat jumper cables 5% cashback signup for 5% cashback at gas stations through september. it pays to discover.
client in 2011 right before sandusky was arrested. here's one of the voice mails. >> just calling to see, you know, whether you had any interest in going to the penn state game this saturday. uh, if you could get back to me and let me know, uh, i would appreciate it, and when you get this message, give me a call, and i hope to talk to you later. thanks. i love you. the court appointed trustee says he's getting ready to distribute up to $2.4 billion in recovered assets to madoff's victims. the trustee estimates about $20 billion was lost to the ponzi scheme. shares of facebook fell more than 10% in after-hours trading to around $24. anderson, that's nearly 40% below the ipo price. a guy gets in a little bit of trouble for looking a lot like santa claus. the riduculist is next. ortunity. the mercedes-benz summer event
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it's time now for the ridiculous. tonight we're adding santa problems. dilemmas that people run into because they look like santa clause. we could call it the kenny rogers problem. in this case we're talking about this guy. his name is thomas. he's well aware that he looks like santa. he even plays it up and seems to get a lot of enjoyment out of it. the problem came when he decided to take a trip to disney world and suddenly people wanted to take pictures with him and get his autograph.
he didn't go dressed as santa, he just really looks like santa. that, and he wore kind of a christmassy shoirt in the middl of the summer. >> i had a shirt that had santa's faces, sayings from the night before christmas. >> didn't know santa had a southern accent. everything was going fine, he was taking pictures, but then officials at the park told him essentially -- >> disney told me that i must inform anybody that came up to me that i am not who you think i am, i'm on vacation and please leave me alone. >> how disturbing would that be for the kids? so dismy apashtly has a policy against guests wearing costumes. he wasn't technically wearing a costume. he says he was wearing a short
with santa faces all over it. in any event, they wanted him to tone it down. here's a statement disney gave to our affiliate wkmg. >> the guest was asked to change his attire because it was disruptive to our operations and confusing to our guests, particularly children who asked to take photos with him. he was not asked to leave. instead, we tried to work with him so that he could continue his visit. >> disrupting to operations? confusing to guests? as many others have pointed out, donald duck wears a hat, a jacket and a tie but no pants. i'm thinking changing the shirt wasn't going to help in this case. what's he going to do, take off his face? it is not like he was going around with a list asking people what they wanted for christmas. >> all the people i ever talked to approached me. i never approached anyone. >> is the north pole below the
mason-dixon line now? here's what we've learned. think carefully about where you go, because there's always someone somewhere making a riduculist and checking it twice. erin burnett "outfront" starts right now. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com "outfront" next, facebook in the hot seat again. and mitt romney tonight on the first leg of his first foreign trip. as a candidate, a big trip. so why, then, is the candidate refusing to talk about foreign policy? there's a conundrum. on the day i come back from the northern mali region, the issue that the defense issues a warning about the rising terror threat in mali. what should america do? let's go "outfront." good evening, everyone. i'm erin burnett. "outfront" tonight, facebook not making many friends this evening
because just a few hours ago, facebook came out with its first earnings report as a big public company. and it did do about what people thought. revenue was up 32% from a year ago. that may sound good but the problem is facebook's shares are taking a big hit. you remember, this is a company that was second biggest stock market launch ever. today facebook shares closed at 26 a share. $26 a share. you see that black diamond-looking ski slope. it's falling even after the market closed tonight. down about 30% from where it went public. this obviously has hurt a lot of people who struggled to try to get shares of this ipo. why are people so nervous? there's one word and it's money. during tonight's conference call with investors, mark zuckerberg, the ceo of facebook, made it clear that making money from advertising is a top priority. >> we know that social ads perform much better than nonsocial ads so our job over the next few years is to increase the percentage of ads that are social and engaging. >> social and engaging ads. well, you know, advertising a